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Dinner with Martha and Mary

Imagine you've been invited to dinner with Martha and Mary and Lazarus. The two sisters and their brother shared the gift of spending time with Jesus and the disciples as true friends. Eating together, talking, reflecting on scriptures. You know that both sisters have the reputation of really understanding Jesus and his ministry and message. While other people were asking "who is this man?" and "what does this mean?" they seemed to have a quiet confidence that they KNEW who he was.

At dinner, you feel comfortable. As her reputation suggests, Martha is focused on hospitality. She does a lot to feed and welcome you and the other guests. When you hear the phrase "a woman's work is never done" you can picture Martha. But lately she has an easy grace about her -- the work seems lighter, less busy, more of an easy flow.

And her sister Mary is focused on conversation. Before you know it, you are enjoying delicious food, but totally engrossed in conversation about what it means to follow Jesus.

You realize that you don't know as much about Lazarus. You know that a while ago he was sick. Do you believe the story: he actually died. While he was sick, the sisters had asked Jesus to come and heal their brother. Before Jesus arrived, Lazarus died and was laid out for burial. Jesus came, and simply called Lazarus to rise up, and now he is obviously alive and enjoying dinner with you. You ask him how he is feeling, and he smiles and just says that he thanks the Lord every day for his strength and health.

As the evening draws to a close, you don't want to leave, but you need to get back home. You know that you'll remember the delicious food, and promise yourself to try to be a little more like Martha next time you invite guests to your home. You remember Lazarus's quiet thankfulness, and vow to be more thankful for the good things God has given you. You remember the conversation most of all. Mary was the one who moved the conversation, mentioning various scriptures, reminding everyone of some of the stories Jesus told.

But it wasn't just Martha, just Lazarus or just Mary that touched your heart. Because of perfect blend of everything you felt this evening, you go home with a new sense of all of the parts of your life that Jesus will transform.

July 2014